Monday, April 12, 2010

Bp. David Bena Editorial: Defending the Faith, and Church Property

April 12, 2010

It's certainly unfortunate that we've come to another round of church versus church, as the Virginia Supreme Court tomorrow will hear the appeal in the church property suit brought by The Episcopal Church (TEC) and Diocese of Virginia against nine faithful Anglican churches in Virginia.

Although we expected the appeal, it is unfortunate that this dispute has continued, and, for that matter, started in the first place.

Several years ago, our orthodox churches made a decision to remain faithful to the teachings of the Bible and the worldwide Anglican Communion after it became clear that TEC was on a wayward path. How did we come to that costly conclusion? TEC formally rejected the authority of Scripture. In its formal response to the Anglican Communion's call to return to the authority of Scripture, TEC said, "We cannot accept what would be injurious to this Church and could well lead to its permanent division."

The painful irony is that TEC's decision to reject the authority of God's Word has been gravely injurious, and has itself caused the very division that TEC's leaders claimed they sought to avoid. Once someone rejects Scripture, then they reject Jesus Christ and Christianity as a whole. It's as simple as that. We could not follow a national body that rejected the very Word of God.

Our Anglican churches (under the umbrella of the Anglican District of Virginia) attempted to resolve matters with the diocese and TEC graciously and out of court, following a process that we spent almost a year developing with diocesan representatives. But the diocese and TEC abruptly broke off discussion of settlement and instead launched a legal confrontation. They sued not only our churches, but also almost 200 individual clergy and volunteer board members. the rest

Virginia Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in Church Property Case Tomorrow
Monday, April 12, 2010
FAIRFAX, Va. – Tomorrow, the Virginia Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the church property case appeal made by The Episcopal Church and Diocese of Virginia challenging the ruling of the Fairfax County Circuit Court. The Circuit Court ruled in favor of the 9 Anglican congregations in Virginia, under the umbrella of the Anglican District of Virginia (ADV), confirming that the Anglican churches could keep their property. Story


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